False Starts

Tom Eisenmann, Harvard Business School
In conversation with: Tom Byers, Stanford University

Many startups, observes Harvard Business School professor Tom Eisenmann, fail because they misapply lean startup principles and launch too quickly. In particular, he finds, in an effort to be efficient and proactive, they skip the crucial “customer discovery” phase of lean startup. Even a short period of deep customer discovery and idea generation, he finds, can help founders truly validate the potential market for their products and avoid “false starts.”